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Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry bone densitometry and pitfalls in the assessment of osteoporosis: a primer for the practicing clinician

Authors
  • Wong, Chen Pong1
  • Gani, Linsey Utami1
  • Chong, Le Roy1
  • 1 Changi General Hospital, 2 Simei St 3, Singapore, 529889, Singapore , Singapore (Singapore)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Archives of Osteoporosis
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Aug 24, 2020
Volume
15
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s11657-020-00808-2
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

SummaryA guide to the clinician on the use of dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry bone densitometry for the management of osteoporosis and the importance of recognizing its pitfalls.PurposeOsteoporosis is a major risk factor for severe fractures in the aging population worldwide, posing a serious public health issue. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) is and remains the main tool for screening of osteoporosis and monitoring of osteoporosis treatment through quantitative measurement of bone mineral density (BMD). Employing DXA to measure BMD is not without pitfalls. We set out to analyze and classify the potential pitfalls of DXA acquisitions and BMD measurements encountered in clinical practice in our institution.MethodsTechnical inaccuracies and discrepancies in BMD interpretation in the history of our department were analyzed and classified into different categories of pitfalls.ResultsWe found that major pitfalls of BMD acquisition and interpretation using DXA can be classified into technical, patient, and interpretive factors. These are illustrated with case examples.ConclusionGood technical understanding of BMD measurements using DXA and recognition of potential pitfalls allow for greater technical and interpretive accuracy, which together hopefully increases the precision of osteoporosis management when practiced in accordance with established clinical guidelines.

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